I love to bake, but while I can get the cakes to taste great, icing them is quite a difficult feat. That is why I love to make naked cakes, because there is no need for perfection with them. Letting the cake peek out with all the little crumbs is part of the beauty and that contrast between the snow white icing and the dark molasses cake is it’s own perfection.
If you are planning any sort of holiday party or get together or even if you will just be the guest at someone else festivities, whip up one of these naked gingerbread cakes and everyone will think you spent hours on it!
• Gingerbread cake mix or your favorite recipe (I used this one and it was amazing)
• Piping bags and large round piping tip (optional, but it makes adding the icing between layers much easier)
• Serrated knife
Begin by baking your cake in a 6” or 4” cake pan. Because this is a naked cake, the more layers the better. For the large cake you will bake three layers and then cut each layer in half to make a six layer cake. For the mini cakes, feel free to bake two to three layers for each cake. To make all three cakes I needed two batches of the gingerbread cake recipe above.
Once you have all you cakes baked and cooled according to the recipe and your icing made and ready, you can begin to assemble your cake. Begin by cutting off the rounded top of each cake, then cut each layer of cake in half using serrated knife.
Place the icing in the piping bag and cover the top of the first layer of cake with the icing.
Place on your next piece of gingerbread and repeat until you have all your layers with a thick layer of icing in between.
Next, you need to decide if you want to add a thin crumb coat like the smaller cakes or leave the gingerbread more exposed with just a dripping of icing coming down the sides like the large cake. For the crumb coat cake, use the spatula to add a thin layer of icing around the sides and top of the cake. You will want to use the spatula to scrape the icing against the sides of the cake as you turn the cake around. This will give you a nice thin layer.
For the larger cake, simply use the spatula to even out any icing that pressed out when assembling the cake to make the sides even, then thin down the remaining icing with a bit of milk and pour it down on the top of the cake letting the extra icing fall down the sides of the cake.
The final step is to decorate the cake with the fairy garden pieces, ornaments, and greenery. You can keep it simple with a few snowflakes on top or an ornament, or go all out by adding faux candy balls, snowflakes and a greenery swag. These cakes not only look delicious, but they taste just like the holidays! They are the perfect dessert to enjoy with friends and family this holiday season!